The Minister of Budget and Economic Planning, Sen. Abubakar Atiku Bagudu has expressed delight to the European Union for donating €25 million to support Nigeria in the fight against gender based violence.

The Minister who was represented by the Director, International Corporation Department, Dr. Lanre Adekanye, made this known while delivering a goodwill message at the Spotlight Initiative Nigeria Country Program, Handing Over – National event, held recently in Abuja.

He stated that the spotlight initiative in Nigeria had achieved significant milestones with their success story hinged on the commitment of stakeholders, partners and the awareness of all kinds of violence, against women and girls.

He further assured that the Ministry would leave no stone unturned in supporting similar programs aimed at sustaining the outcomes and impact of the Spotlight Initiative in Nigeria as women and girls were agents of development and change in any country.

In his remarks, the UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator, Matthias Schmale, expressed his pleasure towards the federal government, civil society groups, the women’s movement and youth organizations for their leadership and commitment to building a world free from violence against women and girls.

He revealed that the initiative was named spotlight because it focused its attention on the issue of gender based violence and tangible results had been attained since its inception in 2019

He disclosed that the spotlight initiative had contributed in changing laws and policies; enabled almost 16,500 women and girls to receive vital services at its centers and made allies with traditional rulers and religious leaders.

On her part, the European Union Ambassador to Nigeria and ECOWAS, H.E Amb. Samuela Isopi, disclosed that almost all states in Nigeria have passed the child right act making it the fastest bill to be passed at the national level in the history of Nigeria.

She restated EU’s commitment continue to prioritize women’s rights and inclusion across sectors; from girls’ education to maternal health, women’s economic empowerment and political representation.